How GWE’s wastewater treatment and green energy technologies are benefitting meat producers

GWE’s anaerobic technologies are being tailored to the needs of the
beef, poultry, pork, rendering and stockfeed industries for long-term environment-friendly
and profitable operation. CST Wastewater Solutions represents GWE technology in
Australasia.

The high-temperature thermophilic anaerobic digestion technologies,
typically operating at 55°C, are part of a proven combination of processes that
digest wastewater’s organic content to produce green energy while achieving
outstanding wastewater effluent discharge qualities.

One of these technologies is the GWE RAPTOR system, which recently won a
major chemical engineering award for innovation in renewable energy, the IChemE
2014 Energy Award.

Developed by wastewater treatment and green energy authority Global
Water Engineering (GWE), the RAPTOR system combines thermophilic high-rate anaerobic
processes with complementary technologies including dissolved air flotation
(DAF), screening and aerobic treatments.

This combination of processes efficiently and rapidly transforms food
processing sludge waste and wastewater from an environmental problem into
profitable green energy (methane) to replace fossil fuels. High temperature thermophilic
digestion also destroys pathogens quickly, unlike lower temperature mesophilic
digestion, allowing the use of effluent as a soil conditioner or fertiliser.

Thermophilic anaerobic/anaerobic systems have been proven
internationally on slaughterhouse wastes, including digestion of wastes such as
manure, stomach contents, blood and excess biosludge, which are transformed
into biogas, fertiliser and environmentally outstanding wastewater effluent.

A European plant handling 6000 pigs and 2000 sows a week implemented the
RAPTOR system and was able to recover the investment from biogas savings within
one year. With 20-50 tons a day of waste submitted to digestion, the GWE plant
achieved the equivalent of 6300Nm³ of biogas a day, which was converted to boiler
process water and 625kW of electricity, equivalent to 300-750kwh per ton of
waste. Effluent quality was increased substantially, and a chemical oxygen
demand (COD) concentration of 200mg/l achieved as specified, at which level the
treated wastewater was suitable for discharge.

CST Wastewater Solutions installed the COHRAL (Covered High Rate
Anaerobic Lagoon) system at Oakey Beef Exports on Queensland’s Darling Downs,
which is owned by NH Foods Australia Pty Ltd, (formerly Nippon Meat Packers). The
plant has successfully deployed anaerobic technologies for green energy and
high quality wastewater treatment. To be commissioned this year, the plant will
extract green energy biogas (methane) from its wastewater streams to replace
millions of dollars’ worth of natural gas currently consumed at the abattoir.

The COHRAL plant is expected to repay the company’s investment within five
years through gas purchase savings amounting to many millions of dollars. The
system will continue to deliver benefits and profitability in perpetuity, says Oakey
Beef Exports General Manager Mr Pat Gleeson.

CST Wastewater Solutions Managing Director Mr Michael Bambridge observes
that the Asia-Pacific is one of the many regions in the world that is only just
beginning to realise the potential of green energy from wastewater. Thanks to
the green technologies, wastewater has transformed from being an environmental
problem and expense into a profitable asset.

GWE anaerobic technologies have been successfully deployed on diverse
organic and agribusiness waste streams produced by industries
including food and beverage processing, livestock, crops and primary
product processing.

Their success was recognised by GWE’s successful entry in the 2014
IChemE award for the best project or process to demonstrate innovation in
renewable energy, alternative energy sources, efficient energy use or the
development of energy production methods that reduce energy and water
intensity. Mr Bambridge noted that the award represented independent
confirmation by a world-respected body of the scientific and practical value of
the process.